Poisoned Chinese Workers Appeal to Apple

137 injured making iPhone screens
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 23, 2011 3:46 AM CST
Beijingers try out iPhones on display inside an Apple store.   (AP Photo/Andy Wong)

(Newser) – Chinese workers poisoned while working for an Apple supplier say they've appealed to the company for help without success. The workers—seriously injured by a toxic chemical used in the manufacture of iPhone screens—complain that the contractor they work for, Wintek, has pressured them to resign and accept cash settlements that will absolve the firm of future liability for injuries that could cause ill health for a lifetime, the New York Times reports.

Since the chemical was used, "monthly profits at Apple and Wintek have gone up by tens of millions every month, the accumulated outcome of workers' lives and health," the workers wrote in a letter to Apple CEO Steve Jobs. Apple, in its annual report on labor conditions at its suppliers, said 137 workers had been seriously injured at the plant and that it would continue to review the medical condition of the workers, but employees say they've yet to hear from anybody at Apple. A recent report from Chinese environmental groups ranked Apple dead last among multinational tech companies with Chinese suppliers.

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